Thursday, July 07, 2011

"Dig This Gig" by Laura Dodd

Just finished reading Dig This Gig: Find Your Dream Job - or Invent It by Laura Dodd.

I previously posted on a book signing of Dodd's and while I still admire her hustle (that might sound negative, but my prior post shows that it's not) in selling the book, it was directed at a different audience than myself.

The book is geared towards people in their 20s who are trying to figure out what to do and presents 32 different vignettes on the careers (and path to those careers) of 20-somethings who work in 8 different fields. Additionally, Dodd interviews a mentor from each field who provides their longer view wisdom around careers.

Dodd's writing isn't necessarily brilliant (how many people's actually is?), but she obviously put her work into the book and I'd say there's value in the whole book for young people who don't really know what they want to do and in specific sections for people interested in a given career field.

Sections of the book:

1. Healthcare Gigs
2. Entertainment Gigs
3. Do-Good Gigs
4. Green Gigs
5. News Gigs
6. Government Gigs
7. Derailed Gigs
8. Outdoor Office Gigs

I skimmed some of the sections, but found myself (and would have expected this) drawn to the Entertainment Gigs, News Gigs and Dan Rather as Mentor section of Derailed Gigs.

What stood out was that the fields were tough (with Entertainment being a coveted area and Journalism a shrinking one), but people like Young Adult author Kathyn Williams or screenwriter Lane Shadgett are on the right paths for themselves by both having talent and hustling (you know, just like Dodd herself). Extremely closely related to this, the aforementioned CBS News Anchor Dan Rather offers the following...

"I think the most helpful advice is from Winston Churchill - 'Never, never, never, never give up.' Just always keep putting one foot in front of the other. Just keep on keeping on."

Basic concept I took from Rather, many of the people featured by Dodd and Dodd's efforts around her book is you gotta look for different paths, gotta try something and then gotta work at it.

Simple, profound, elegant... and if easy, everyone would do it.